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7 Bedtime Routines for Better Sleep

7 Bedtime Routines to Help You Sleep Better

sleep better

Humans are creatures of habit. Like any other routine, a bedtime routine develops habits that help our brains recognize when it's time to go to bed. By performing the same activities in the same order each night, your brain begins to perceive these activities as precursors to sleep.

What is a Bedtime Routine?

A bedtime routine is a set of activities you do in the same order every night, in the 30 to 60 minutes before you go to bed; you can feel relaxed or calm through doing these things and finally fall asleep faster for quality sleep.

Bedtime routines for adults can vary based on your situation but usually include relaxing activities like listening to soft music, reading, and doing some spiritual practices.

All the calming activities are mainly for creating a peaceful and quiet sleep environment, bringing you better sleep quality and avoiding sleep disorders.


Why Bedtime Routine is Important for Adults?

why bedtime routines are important to adults

The importance of bedtime traces back to childhood. As we all know, children with consistent bedtime routines can perform better on cognitive skills such as working memory and executive function assessments.

A regular night routine can address your problem of late-night stress and anxiety, which keep you awake till midnight. Besides, after having your mental and physical overdrive during the daytime, you may find it hard to slow down and unwind before sleep, as those anxious thoughts like health concerns, financial worries and other issues will sober you up.

On top of that, you may have severe trouble sleeping daily. The widespread prevalence of sleep disorders like insomnia is a significant threat to most of us; poor sleep quality will lead to irritability, trouble concentrating, poor performance at work, etc.

Interestingly, many of us tend to leave the notion of nighttime routines behind once we surpass our adolescence; without our parents' constant daily chatter or school's regulation, we start to set ourselves free from those "constraints". For instance, we prefer binge-watching TV shows, getting lost on Tiktok, and even surfing the internet without any purpose. It's probably because we want to have some "me time" after a long day; however, you can seek calming activities to help you sleep better and faster.

So, taking time to calm down before trying to sleep isn't just for kids; a regular sleep schedule is also vital for adults.

Creating and following your specific bedtime routines can pay off in major sleep dividends. However, it may take you a few nights to set in. All you need to do is stick to your bedtime routines and be patient.

Here are 7 recommended bedtime routines to promote your healthy sleep.


Decide on a Set Bedtime

a set bedtime

Try to decide on your sleep and wake-up times, and stick to them daily. It would help if you started your nighttime routine at a consistent time each night since your brain begins to wind down for sleep a few hours before your bedtime because your brain will naturally feel tired when it's bedtime by following the consistent sleep and wake-up routine.

Even for adults, the best sleep also requires a set bedtime. You can easily forget about the clock while streaming another episode of your favorite show or chatting with your besties online, so you may also need to set the alarm as a reminder for sleeping. However, you don't have to jump into bed immediately, leaving some time for doing other routines.


Eat Light and Healthy Before Bed

eat healthy and light before bed

Having late meals or drinking alcohol before bed will boost unhealthy sleep habits and your crazy weight gain. You can limit your daily eating window to 10 hours every day, improving your metabolism and bringing you better sleep quality. If you want to have some late-night munchies or snacks, you can try healthier food options like oatmeal, yoghurt, or nuts to boost your melatonin levels before sleep.

Also, it would be best if you avoided drinks that are sugary, alcoholic, or caffeinated; then, you can end your day with any warm beverage you like. For example, a cup of warm herbal tea or a glass of warm lemon honey water, and some people enjoy warm milk before bedtime.


Dim Your Light and Room Temperature

dim your light before sleep

Regarding the lighting in your bedroom, you should switch off your bright overhead lights and turn on your dimmer clip-on lights, which are better with amber mode to block blue light. Because most electric lighting also emits blue light like the sun, blue light can influence your melatonin production to sleep better. Therefore you're supposed to consider replacing your lamps with LED lights that have amber light.

It is suggested that temperature is a primary factor in achieving quality sleep. So, to fall asleep faster and have quality sleep, you can prepare yourself for sleep by lowering your room temperature; you sleep best when you're cool but not cold. You can adjust your bedroom temperature to around 65 degrees to best align with your natural circadian rhythms, according to some sleep experts.


Take A Shower or Bath Before Bed

take a shower before bed

The sleep specialist Whitney Roban suggests that "our circadian rhythm, which is our sleep-wake cycle, is guided by our body temperature and light," If you want your body temperature to decline for melatonin to be produced more. In other words, after you get out of a hot shower, the body temperature will drop, so the melatonin production in your body is boosted, and you'll sooner feel sleepy.

People prefer warm, hot or cool temperatures to feel relaxed taking a shower, which depends on you. For instance, some people need a hot shower to make them feel sleepy. However, hot showers may energize you so that you may opt for something more on the warm side. Don't make yourself feel too hot when trying to sleep; cooling off will be a better choice for quality sleep.


Minimize Screen Time from Electronic Devices

Minimize Screen Time from Electronic Devices

Screens from TVs, smartphones and laptops can emit blue light, stimulating your body’s internal clock (circadian rhythm) and keeping your brain buzzing long after it’s time to sleep. 

The other reason is that blue light exposure can also suppress melatonin production and secretion in your body. Melatonin is also known as the “Dracula of hormones,” which is your best weapon against insomnia, as it can make you feel drowsy. 

It would help if you avoided screens to promote your quality sleep— yes, that includes your phone. Try to stop scrolling your phone aimlessly at night — for about 1 hour before bed. Does it sound unrealistic to you? Then aim for 30 minutes. Keep yourself away from electronic gadgets 30 minutes before you go to bed. Even small amounts of screen-free relaxation before sleep will help you rest more deeply. 


Read a Good Book with Amber Book Light

read book in amber light before sleep

Reading before bed is an age-old tradition. A bedtime reading night ritual might not be entirely fresh to you if someone read to you in childhood. However, even though we are now adults, we can still benefit from reading books before bed. 


Briefly, you can relieve stress after a long work day and forget all the workload and burdens; feel free to immerse yourself in the fascinating novel plots. Meanwhile, if you want quality sleep by reading a good book, you should pick some books like fiction or novels and read them for pleasure. Because whenever you are reading, you create a new memory; therefore, you can exercise your memory muscles and improve your mental acuity.

If you are an avid bedtime reader, buy an amber book light to block blue light, protecting your eyes. The unique amber light can stimulate your body to produce more melatonin naturally.

Reading a good book in amber light helps you wind down quickly and feel pleasantly drowsy, and then you can enjoy the highest possible quality of sleep.


Jot Down Your Thoughts in a Journal

Jot Down Your Thoughts in a Journal

You may wonder: what is journaling exactly? Put simply, journaling before sleep is the exercise of tracking your emotions, thoughts, tasks, and reflections before you go to sleep. Specifically, you can set aside 15 minutes each night and write down your recent positive experience. Not only about what happened to you but also about how you feel and think about these things.

Don't worry about the spelling, punctuation or grammar; you can write down everything you want. As you know, most people struggle with sleep disorders or insomnia due to overthinking about ongoing issues and upcoming tasks. In this case, you are allowed to release your stress and anxiety, which can benefit your mental health and well-being. At the same time, when you are journaling, you can process your thoughts from the day, which prevents you from overthinking.

If you suffer from considerable pressure and have insomnia issues, try this journaling technique to help yourself.


How Long Should My Bedtime Routine Be?

Your bedtime routine should be between 30 to 60 minutes. This will give you enough time to relax, unwind, and prepare for bed without feeling rushed or stressed. Creating a suitable bedtime routine based on your lifestyle will promote your sleep to a great extent. Your goal is to build consistency; that is, you can stick to your bedtime routines daily.

Night routines will train your body for sleep and encourage productivity the next day. Having a bedtime routine can help you unwind and close the day. Once you’ve relaxed and are ready for bed, climb onto your comfy mattress with your favorite pillow and doze off into dreamland.


In The End

Work-life balance varies from person to person, but even if you live a frenetic lifestyle, you should have a good bedtime routine to take care of your well-being. Following a healthy bedtime routine should be part of your schedule, just as much as eating and exercising should.

There are plenty of night rituals for you to choose from; adopt those that regularize your nighttime and keep you healthy mentally and physically. Prioritize being consistent with bedtime routines, and you will effectively train your body to prepare for sleep each night.

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